The Killer Shorts Screenplay competition wants your ideas.
In the past few years, horror shorts have become a goldmine for Hollywood. Feature films such as The Babadook, Lights Out, and Mama originated as proof-of-concept shorts. Shorts like Whisper, The Burden,Behind, Sweet Tooth, and Milk were discovered by producers like James Wan and Sam Raimi and are now in development as features.
But it all starts with the script.
Killer Shorts was created to discover, inspire, and promote emerging screenwriters around the world as we dig up the freshest new voices in horror. We’re passionate about horror and all its sub-genres! Horrifying monsters, psychological terrors, hilarious horror-comedies, creepy creatures…whatever your dark & twisted mind can imagine!
Five-act structure is the secret to writing an hour-long pilot. But how can you master these kinds of scripts if you have no idea how to use it?
Have you ever sat to write but had no idea what should happen when in your story? While tools like outlines and treatments help, it all boils down to how your structure your story.
Story structure is not mandatory but many writers find it incredibly useful and comforting when they sit down to work. Outside of that, you may need to know it as you take professional meetings for staffing. Today, I want to go over one of the less talked about structures five act, and let you know how yo use it and why.
So let’s fade in!
What is Five-act Structure?
Story structure marks the beats or moments in a play, tv show, or movie that move along the plot. The structure itself comes from Aristotle’s Poetics. In 350 BCE, Aristotle wrote that the plot structure of a drama is formed like a basic triangle.
Raging Bull is known in part for its excellent improvisation, but this sequence was precisely planned.
One of the things we easily forget about directing is that it requires many disciplines to merge, and some of the best directing doesn’t come down to one methodology but more likely a hybrid.
Thanks to Farout Magazine and Cinephilia & Beyond, we can take a look at Martin Scorsese’s hand-drawn storyboards for Raging Bull, specifically from the pivotal and unforgettable fight between Jake LaMotta and Sugar Ray Robinson. Looking at how Scorsese planned the sequence, and literally delivered that exact plan in the final edit, is a master class in pre-visualization all it’s own.
But before we get to the images in question, we should contextualize the movie itself. And look for further than the in-depth “DVD special feature-esque” story on Cinephilia & Beyond for every little detail.
Yesterday we reported that a number of editors in Hollywood had been reporting a widespread problem of Mac Pros crashing that are running Avid Media Composer. Today, Avid is confirming that the root cause for a reboot issue encountered by some of our customers has been identified and is unrelated to Avid and its creative … Continued
Following the launch of its new iPhone 11 models and updated iPad, Apple has released iOS 13 and iPadOS 13, its latest mobile operating systems. Although iOS 13 was released last week, iOS 13.1 was only released yesterday and due to it being a substantial upgrade in terms of features and stability, we held off until now to post this overview.
Summarized below are the new tools, features and functionality iOS 13 and iPadOS 13 bring to a lengthy list of iOS devices that support the latest operating systems.
Update Photos app
One of the first things you’ll notice with iPad and iOS 13 is the updated Photos app. Now, there’s a dedicated ‘Photos’ tab at the bottom of the app that splits your images up into ‘Years,’ ‘Months,’ ‘Days’ and ‘All Photos.’ You can tap on the individual timeframes or pinch in/out to expand and compress accordingly.
It’s not a massive change, but it should simplify the process of finding older images if you know the rough timeframe they were captured.
New photo editing tools
Along with the new organization within the Photos app is an improved user interface and new editing tools.
First and foremost, the interface for editing images has improved dramatically. Rather than the multiple layers of dials that were vaguely worded and unusually categorized, the editing interface now uses dedicated sections, each of which has individual adjustments displayed as circular tiles that can easily be swiped through and individually adjusted. Below is a list, in order, of the editing tools at hand:
Portrait Mode photos have also had a bit of an update. You can now control the intensity of the light on Portrait Mode photos and with newer devices, there’s a Portrait Mode option called High-Key Light Mono.
Video editing in Photos
Another major improvement in iOS 13 is the ability to edit video. You can now crop, make image adjustments and even add filters to videos directly within the Photos app. Previously, video edits required third-party apps, which was anything but intuitive.
Apple has also added new functionality to its Shortcuts app called Automations. These are individual macros of sorts that can be used to trigger certain behaviors on your phone. The uses are seemingly endless, but a few notable examples include the ability to ‘change’ the default camera app, trigger the camera to open when you get a certain location or even upload your latest photos and videos to a backup location of your choice when you connect to your home Wi-Fi.
As Apple demonstrated during its keynote, the iPad will now appear to websites as a standard computer rather than a mobile device. While this is overarching across the entire web, one area this could greatly benefit photographers is in regards to an online portfolio and photo blogging. Now, in iPadOS 13 you can use sites such as Squarespace, WordPress and other portfolio and blogging platforms as you would with a desktop computer.
Previously, it was possible to visit the likes of Squarespace and WordPress, but a lot of functionality was greatly limited or downright unattainable due to websites only recognizing the iPad, even the ‘Pro’ models, as mobile devices. Rene Ritchie of iMore has a great rundown on what the new functionality means.
As we addressed back with iPadOS 13 was first announced at WWDC in May 2019, one of the most significant additions is the ability to use external hard drives natively within the iPadOS 13 Files app. It’s now possible to import, export and transfer images and other content from USB thumb drives, external SSDs and other storage means.
It’ll be up to the developers of third-party applications to make the most of it (we’re looking at you, Adobe), but having the option at all is a much-welcomed addition.
Below is a list of iPhone and iPod Touch models that support iOS 13:
iPhone 11 Pro Max
iPhone 11 Pro
iPhone XS Max
iPhone 8 Plus
iPhone 7 Plus
iPhone 6s Plus
iPod touch 7th generation
Below is a list of iPad models that support iPadOS 13:
12.9-inch iPad Pro 3rd generation
12.9-inch iPad Pro 2nd generation
12.9-inch iPad Pro 1st generation
11-inch iPad Pro
10.5-inch iPad Pro
9.7-inch iPad Pro
iPad 6th generation
iPad 5th generation
iPad Air 3
iPad Air 2
iPad mini 5
iPad mini 4
In conclusion, iOS 13 is well worth downloading if your device is supported. Even if you have iOS 13 installed, make sure you update to iOS 13.1 which should be available now as an over-the-air update, as it irons out a lot of issues found in the first public version of iOS 13.
If you have an extended period of time on your hands and want to see nearly every new feature Apple has added to iOS 13, Jeff Benjamin of 9to5Mac has created this comprehensive video below:
Likewise for iPadOS 13:
If there’s a tip or trick you find that’s not mentioned in this list, let us know and we might add it. We would also love to see what Shortcuts and Automations you come up with for your photo workflow.
Filter system manufacturer Nisi has introduced a new filter holder that allows photographers to rotate two filters independently of each other, in much the same way that Lee’s Tandem operates. The Nisi Switch attaches to the existing 82mm filter holder and provides an additional rotation point so that the forward filter can be twisted separately to filters in the main holder.
The system is designed for those using graduated filters to make tackling mountainous horizons easier and so that graduated filters can be placed at more than a single angle to allow photographers to control different areas of the scene individually.
The Switch is part of the company’s 100mm filter system, and will cost around $99. Those without the current 82mm filter holder will also need to buy a V6, a V5Pro or a V5 kit as well. These kits start at $169. For more information see the Nisi website.
The Zacuto Camera Cage for the Nikon Z6 and Z7 is one of just many options that are now available for Nikon’s flagship hybrid mirrorless cameras. I wanted to see just how well made and featured the Zacuto option was. In my personal opinion, a camera cage is a must if you want to use … Continued
The bug has been tracked to a bad update of Google Chrome.
Yesterday’s news that many of the 2013 Apple Mac Pro “trash cans” were crashing due to a bug affecting users of AVID Media Composer has prompted the company to work around the clock to find out where the problem lies. And the issue is so serious for AVID that CEO Jeff Rosica and CTO Dana Ruzicka have a video confirming that the bug existed.
They have learned that it isn’t related to Media Composer or other Avid related products. But until a fix is had, users should back up their data before trying any fix or workaround.
In a statement, Avid said: “Avid is pleased that the reboot issue facing some customers is solved and while Avid products are not the root cause, we’re keeping an intense focus on bringing all of our customers back online and back to work.”
Filmmaking is rife with moral pitfalls. Three docs, including Hulu’s Untitled Amazing Johnathan Documentary, demonstrate how filmmakers can respect or betray the trust of their subjects.
A documentary film is like a glass case. It is a life, only partially captured, frozen in time and context, and on display. It is encased in the subjectivity of the filmmaker that made it. However great the pains the director has taken to preserve the subject’s humanity, the person depicted inevitably becomes an object: to be seen, to be judged, to be sympathized with, or victimized.
As such, to make a documentary is to navigate a minefield of ethical dilemmas, chief among them the issue of how to best portray the subject. Three films that debuted at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year all grappled with their own complex moral questions of representation. The director Beniamino Barrese trains his camera on a fiercely unwilling subject in The Disappearance of My Mother.
Writing exposition is one of the trickiest parts of screenwriting. You can try to hide it, subvert expectations, and make it leaner — but it still has to happen. So how can you make yours the best?
Have you ever been taken out of a movie or a TV show because the story seems to take a break to tell you a bunch of facts?
Maybe these facts were the science behind what was going on, or a long sob story about a character’s dead wife, or even just a treatise on love. Whatever the case, if they’re not written well, they can take you out of the story and ruin a scene or even the entire project.
These dialogue breaks are called “exposition” and occur frequently in literature, film, and television.
Today, let’s define this term, figure out some strategies for using it to its utmost potential, and make you a better screenwriter.
How to Write the Best Exposition in Your Script
Exposition, or narratvie exposition, is the insertion of information within a screenplay or narrative.
As someone who spent more than 10 years living in London and now lives in a village of just 750 people, I can relate to those who struggle to find inspiration on their doorstep. In this motivating video from Evan Ranft, the photographer runs through some ideas of how to rediscover your hometown with your camera.
Learning how to write a climax will help keep your script tight and exciting. But how do you do it?
When you’re writing your screenplay you’ll find mapping things out based on story structure can be cathartic. It eases you into each scene and provides a story map for where you are going.
For me, writing the climax is the most satisfying part of screenwriting. You get to anticipate the audience. Surprise them. And it means you’re almost done.
But how can you write those scenes with confidence and learn how to master writing the climax?
Today, we’ll learn how to write a climax in your script and talk about the basic tenents that can push your climax over the edge.
How to Write a Climax (Definition and Script Structure)
Many people cite the climax as their favorite part of a movie or television episode. But what does the climax truly mean?
A climax is the most intense, exciting, or important point of a movie or television show. It marks the amalgamation of all the scenes that came before it and includes most of the payoffs within the film or episode.
The new Netflix series “Undone,” like “A Scanner Darkly” before it, creates a compelling visual style by rotoscoping live action actors, and painting animation frames over the top. But what if you could create the effect without all that pesky manual labor? After all, this is 2019–aren’t robots supposed to be doing the tedious stuff for us by now? Enter EbSynth.
EbSynth is a cool app developed by some very bright people at the Czech Technical University in Prague and the good folks at Adobe Research. And like so much cool software in the modern era, it’s a free download.
While there’s not much to the process of authoring animation using EbSynth, there also isn’t any documentation on the site. So I’ve compiled a short (5 minute) video taking you through the process of turning your boring video footage into compelling animated art.
Now if you’re a skilled ‘oil and canvas’ artist, you can paint your own keyframes and EbSynth will adapt your style to the rest of the video sequence. However, if stick figures are more your speed (as you can see from the sketch to the right, I fall into that ‘cat’egory), you can use a style transfer site like deepdreamgenerator.com to paint the keyframes for you.
The system works surprisingly well. If subjects move from forward facing to a profile during the shot you’ll need to create additional keyframes and blend between renders (you may want to use a morph tool to make this look seamless). You may also need to mask out actors and track in static backgrounds if there’s a lot of camera movement.
This really does open up a lot of creative possibilities. Since the quality of the shot texture and lighting is derived from the painted keyframes, you can spend a lot less time on set lighting for video you’re planning to convert. There are also some possible tricks that could be performed on 3D animated renders (like rendering out high quality keyframes, then applying those to a quicker, untextured render). I’ve yet to experiment there, so stay tuned.
Ready to dive into a new realm of hybrid animation? Watch the five minute Impossible Shots video below.
Photographer and YouTuber Mathieu Stern recently got to visit one of the coolest places on earth for camera collectors: The Camera Rescue Project, one of the largest vintage camera collections in Europe.
The Camera Rescue Project is an organization from Finland that is dedicated to preserving cameras for future generations. Their stated goal is to find, repair, and “rescue” 100,000 vintage cameras by 2020; according to the counter on the project’s homepage shows that they’re a little over halfway there.
And who better to visit and tour you around their home base in Finland than Mathieu Stern, weird lens expert and lover of vintage gear?
The beginning of the video consists of a tour of the Kamera Store showroom where rescued Camera Rescue Project cameras are sold, before diving into the actual guts of the Project where they are currently working to repair some 2,000 old cameras while they continue to receive hundreds more.
In the end, Stern walks away with a bunch of cool new “weird lenses” to test out in Finland, but that is going to be the subject of another video.
With over 3 million Instagram followers, and a client base that includes Apple and Nikon, Brandon Woelfel is doing something right. Now, in his new Skillshare Original online class, the photographer is sharing not only the secrets behind his shooting and editing techniques, but how he achieved his successes.
Let’s go over what imposter syndrome is, what causes it, and how we can defeat it together.
Do you ever feel like you don’t fit in? Like the work you do will never be good enough? Even when you have success, you’re not sure you deserve it?
This feeling is called “imposter syndrome,” and it affects millions of people across the globe and… it’s especially nasty in Hollywood. Today, I want to go over the idea of this state of mind and tackle how it works in Hollywood. We’ll use it to see the inspiration for characters, self-doubt, and try to find a way to deal with it together.
Imposter Syndrome: Meaning and Causes
Living in the modern era means that there are people diagnosing and coming up with names for a lot of the things that were undefinable before. Not only will this make us healthier film and tv makers, but it also eases my mind to know other people deal with similar things.
In Hollywood, there’s a saying: “Fake it till you make it. ” While I think that’s generally good advice when you need to build a career and confidence, I don’t think it helps people dealing with imposter syndrome.